CU forensics students shine at Novice National Tournament

The Cameron University Forensics Team, comprised of first year competitors, continued to shine at the recent Novice National Tournament, with a fourth place team finish among Division 1. The tournament took place in Houston, TX from March 6-8 with teams from 32 colleges and universities including the United States Air Force Academy, Florida State University, the University of Houston, and San Jose State University. To be eligible to compete in events, students had to be in their first year of collegiate competition.

"With each tournament appearance, the Cameron forensics team continues to improve," says Dan Schabot, CU Director of Forensics. "The Novice National Tournament is limited to competitors who are in their first year of collegiate competition. For the most part, participants have experience from high school competitions and tournaments. Of the CU team members, only two competed in forensics tournaments in high school; 10 of our students had never competed in this arena prior to last fall. I'm incredibly proud of each and every one of their accomplishments, given the level of quality we face at each tournament."

In parliamentary debate, freshmen Tabetha Kautzman of Marlow and Jordan Howell of Central High Township made it to the final four, losing to a team from Air Force on a 2 to 1 judges' decision. They defeated teams from the University of Michigan at Flint and Rollins College (FL) in the preliminary rounds. 

Seniors Cremoy Agard and Nicole Griffin, both of St. Kitts & Nevis, finished in 19h place. Other CU debaters included senior Pierre Liburd and junior Felicia Manners, both of St. Kitts & Nevis, and senior Katie Duffy, junior Matt Penick and freshman Lamod McFadden, all of Lawton. 

The CU team also finished well in individual events. Kautzman tied for first place in extemporaneous speaking but was awarded second place on the tie-breaker. She also finished third in impromptu sales.  Kautzman finished as the eighth overall speaker at the entire tournament due to her exceptional performances. 

Freshman Jordan Scribner of Jenks finished third in both persuasive speaking and communication analysis. Junior Bhupendra Acharya of Pochara, Nepal, and senior Tai Bowles of Lawton also competed in individual events, as did the debaters listed above. 

The team heads to the Pi Kappa Delta National Tournament and Convention in Shreveport, LA from March 18-March 21, where they will compete against teams from more than 60 colleges and universities. 

For more information about Cameron University Forensics, contact Director Dan Schabot at 580-581-2555 or


March 13, 2009